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Sunday, May 26, 2024

Students For Justice in Palestine host walkout and rally on Oct. 25

The walkout on the Wellman lawn was dedicated toward protesting the conflict in Gaza and Palestine and the rally was aimed at calling out administration 

 

By KAYA DO-KHANH — campus@theaggie.org

 

On Wednesday Oct. 25 at 12 p.m., the Students For Justice in Palestine (SJP) club at UC Davis hosted a walkout and rally on the Wellman lawn to protest the recent siege on Gaza. The walk out was dedicated toward protesting the conflict in Gaza and Palestine as a whole. According to a post on  SJP’s Instagram, the rally was held to “call our administration for their complicity in the genocide.” 

Draped with the black-and-white Palestinian keffiyeh scarves over their faces, a number of students walked out onto the Wellman lawn carrying signs that read “Free Palestine” and “No Justice No Peace.” Another sign read, “This law student doesn’t want to work for people that turn a blind eye to genocide.” 

Before the rally started, a member of SJP told the crowd to grab the free lunch that was provided which included lentils and water from tables set up at the front of the lawn. 

They were also handing out free masks as he told the people gathered on the lawn, “I really recommend covering your face because we are being surveillanced by UC Davis organizations and police.”

A group of students hung a large banner from the front balcony of the second floor of Wellman Hall with a drawing of the Palestinian flag along with writing that read “Free Palestine End The Occupation.” 

At 12:30 p.m., a speaker from SJP went to the front of the lawn with a bullhorn, gave a speech and led a series of chants, such as “Free, Free Palestine, Israel, Israel go to hell. Colonizers we don’t need them, what we want is total freedom.” People were waving the Palestinian flag and beating a drum. The students also chanted, “Up, up with liberation, down, down with occupation. Biden, Biden you can’t hide, we charge you with genocide [..] “Gary May, you can’t hide, we charge you with genocide.” 

There were flyers posted outside of Wellman Hall that had a picture of Chancellor Gary May that read in print, “Gary May sits on the board of Leidos, a defense company that works with the Israeli Ministry of Defense and the Israel Airport Authority […] Next time Gary says he rejects violence and hate, ask him if that includes all the refugees he’s helped murder.” 

The “Eye on Mrak” and “Bookhead” campus egghead statues were also graffitied with the words “Free Palestine” in black on Wednesday and were cleaned off on Thursday morning. 

“We have been overwhelmed by the amount of support we have received these past weeks at all of our events,” a caption on one of SJP’s Instagram posts said. “There is so much strength in numbers, and we never thought we would reach a point where our numbers reached this high. […] Our fight for liberation is nowhere near over, and we will not stop until Palestine has been freed. Palestine will be free by the people, for the people. Don’t stop showing up, don’t stop speaking, and never stop fighting.” 

 

Written by: Kaya Do-Khanh — campus@theaggie.org

 

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